Mumbai: The government of Maharashtra has ordered that its employees limit their use of mobile devices while in the workplace because of the Pegasus snooping scandal. In an order by the General Administration Department (GAD), it was stated that mobile phones should only be used when it is necessary for official work.
The order claims that the use of mobile phones in government offices may tarnish the image of the government, but it made no mention of spyware developed by an Israeli company.
If mobile phones are to be used for communication, the order encouraged text messaging as much as possible, minimizing conversations through them as much as possible.
According to the government, mobile devices should not be used for social media during office hours. The ‘code of conduct’ also specifies that personal calls on mobile phones should be answered outside the office.
Furthermore, the order stated that mobile phone conversations should be ‘polite’ and ‘low-key’ so as not to disturb people nearby.
However, calls from elected representatives and senior officials must be answered immediately.
Mobile phones should be turned off during official meetings or inside senior officials’ chambers. Similarly, internet browsing, checking messages, and using earphones should be avoided on these occasions, the government advised.